Announcing Ultimaker Cura 3.3 beta

Announcing Ultimaker Cura 3.3 beta

  • Written by Matt Jani
    Mar 27, 2018
  • Category:
    / News

Ultimaker Cura 3.3 beta is available now. Download today to discover a new set of features, plugins, bug fixes, and greater support for third-party printers.

What's new in Ultimaker Cura 3.3 beta?

  • New fonts, for better screen readability, and for unification with Cura Connect
  • New look and feel for the plugin browser
  • Circular prime towers for a more reliable dual extrusion experience
  • Support blocker, giving more control over where support material is generated
  • New option to disable an extruder on the Ultimaker 3 to unlock ‘print one at a time’ mode

Please note: We’ve thoroughly tested this beta version, which offers great functionality and improved features. However, it’s still in the beta stage, which means we can’t guarantee the same print reliability as our stable versions. If you’re working on an important project, we strongly recommend that you use the latest stable version of Ultimaker Cura.

UX improvements

Updated font. Default font changed to NotoSans to increase readability and consistency with Cura Connect. The font update also fixes some rendering issues on Mac OSX.

Font comparison
Fonts have been updated to NotoSans

Configuration/sync button. Configuration and synchronization button now available for network-connected printers to synchronize all possible available configurations in your Cura Connect group. The name of the group host is automatically pulled from the API, and network printers and local printers are separated in the list.

Configuration sync
Compatible configurations for the connected printer are displayed

Setting visibility preset. Presets guide you to find the most important settings in an incremental way. A small menu is located next to the search bar to easily access new setting visibility presets.

Model assistant. Models sliced for print with ABS, PC, PP or CPE+ that have a larger footprint than 15 x 15 x 15 cm will activate tips to inform the user of how they can achieve the best possible results.

Multiply models faster. Significant speed increase when multiplying models.

Show tooltip for unavailable profiles. If a profile in recommended mode is greyed-out, a tooltip will inform the user why.

Empty material slots Ultimaker 3. When a material is not loaded in an extruder on the Ultimaker 3, it is displayed as ‘Empty’ rather than ‘Unknown’.

Slicing engine optimizations

Single extrusion mode. Disable an extruder on the Ultimaker 3 for single extrusion prints. In the right panel, right-click on the desired extruder and select ‘Disable extruder’ to disable it. Re-enable it by right-clicking and selecting ‘enable extruder’. Printing profiles are optimized for the active extruder, as well as global settings, such as build plate temperature, to achieve better print quality. Using single extrusion mode also makes the ‘print one at a time’ feature available for the Ultimaker 3, or other dual extrusion printers.

Circular prime tower. Prime towers are now circular. A circular prime tower path results in a less jerky print head action, a more robust structure, better layer adhesion, and better build plate adhesion. This reduces the chance of failure.

Circular prime tower
Circular prime towers allow smoother print head motion and are more robust

Connected infill lines. Grid and triangular infill patterns now have connected lines for a more constant flow, better model rigidity, and reduced impact on the quality of the outer wall.

Support blocker. Generate a cube mesh to prevent support material generation in specific areas of a model. Cubes can be scaled, rotated, and moved with the standard adjustment tools to fit the user’s requirements.

Support blocker
Use the support blocker to prevent support being generated in specific areas

Real bridging. New experimental feature that detects bridges, adjusting the print speed and fan speed to enhance print quality on bridging parts.

Updated CuraEngine executable. The CuraEngine executable now contains a dedicated icon, author information and a license.

Use RapidJSON and ClipperLib from system libraries. Application updated to use verified copies of libraries, reducing maintenance time (as the operating system is now responsible), as well as reducing the amount of code shipped (as there’s no need to redistribute it if it’s already on the user’s system).

Compressed gcode. Gcode saved from Ultimaker Cura is now compressed to save space (using gzip).

Print behavior enhancements

Initial layer flow. New setting in the ‘material’ category where the initial layer flow can be adjusted to give the user better control.

Initial travel move retraction. Retraction has been added to the initial travel move, reducing the chance of prime blobs getting dragged into parts before brim/skirts are printed.

Unnecessary retractions in spiralize. Removes retractions on layer change in spiralize mode, improving model quality.

Faster travel paths. Until now, the path order optimizer worked on the basis that the shortest possible route could be taken from any one point to another. When combing is used, any route may take longer, due to the need to route around obstacles. Now, it can use the combed distances to give more consistent results.

Plugin updates

Plugin browser look and feel. The plugin browser has been updated with a better look and feel to bring it in line with other UI elements. The author name is clickable, which opens email to contact the author directly for support. Plugins can now also be uninstalled with an uninstall button.

Plugin browser

New plugins. Three new plugins were added to Ultimaker Cura: Scalable extra prime, Print temperature offset, and Enclosure fan.

Pre-heat extruders. New feature that allows preheating extruders in the printer monitor.

Renamed TweakAtZ to ‘ChangeAtZ’. Script has been renamed to be more consistent with other scripts.

Import XML material profile checks.  XML material profile files are now checked before import in Ultimaker Cura to avoid potential issues.

Bug fixes

We have been working hard on various bug fixes for a better user experience:

  • Infill density now applies to both extruders instead of just one
  • Fixed slice engine crashes when slicing with a material at 0 °C
  • Fixed users unable to connect to a printer after losing the network connection
  • Replaced comtypes modules in SolidWorks plugin with win32com to fix errors

Third-party printers

We have updated profiles for third party machines, including FABtotum, Dagoma, uBuild, Cartesio, Printrbot, SeeMeCNC, Velleman Vertex, and gMax 1.5.

Discover Ultimaker Cura 3.3 beta

We’d like to thank our contributors, including fieldOfView, Pheneeny, smartavionics and thopiekar.

The beta release of Ultimaker Cura 3.3 is available completely free of charge. Don't forget to let us know your thoughts in our community of 3D printing experts, where all user feedback will be incorporated for the stable release.

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